What Should I Look for in a Property Manager?

So, you’ve decided to hire a property manager to make your life easier—you’ll soon be enjoying less stress and more free time! Outsourcing your daily tasks can even make your business more profitable. Plus, you’ll be able to enjoy passive income, which is usually the goal for most individuals who enter the rental property business. But how exactly should you choose a property manager and what factors should you consider? In general, all reputable property managers should offer the following:

Appropriate Licensure

Did you know that it’s mandatory for all property managers in Arizona to be licensed real estate agents? Never hesitate to ask to see proof of licensure. A reputable business should be completely transparent about their credentials. Hiring a licensed property manager ensures that you’re working with someone who is knowledgeable about the industry.

It’s not easy to obtain this licensure. First, applicants must pass a background check, including fingerprint clearance. Next, the license requires 90 hours of pre-licensing education, which must be received from a state-approved real estate education program. Applicants have to successfully pass a rigorous exam administered by that program. In addition, they must successfully complete a six-hour class on contract law. Finally, applicants need to pass the state’s licensing exam.

Flexible Fee Structures

In addition to looking for a property manager who is licensed, you should check their fee structure. For your convenience, it’s best to choose a company that offers multiple fee structures. That way, you can select the one that best fits your needs. Most property managers charge a percentage ranging from 8% to 12% of the rent. An ideal property manager would offer different packages.

For example, you could choose a basic package for a lower percentage. Alternatively, you could choose a premium package at a higher percentage if you wish to outsource all or most of your property management tasks. Some property managers might even offer à la carte services. For instance, you could opt to pay just for tenant placement services.

A Successful Track Record

A property manager who is just starting out in the business is likely to offer lower rates to build up their clientele. Although this can be enticing to landlords, it’s not necessarily the best option. If your goal is to enjoy more passive income, it’s generally ideal to choose an established company with a long track record of satisfied clients. In addition to asking for references, you should look up the company on the website of the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Choose a company that is A+ rated, with no complaints or negative actions pending against them.

It’s also a great idea to check for online reviews. Do a quick Google search of the property management company to uncover reviews on Yelp or Google My Business. Ideally, you should choose a property manager that has dozens of four- and five-star reviews. Be sure to read some of the reviews as well as checking the ratings. If there is a mix of positive reviews from both landlords and tenants, then you know you’ve found a great property manager.

Online Portals for Tenants and Landlords

The days of having tenants mail in paper checks are gone… or at least they should be. Choose a property manager that has a website with online portals for both landlords and tenants. Your tenants should be able to pay their rent digitally and submit property repair or maintenance requests online. In addition, prospective renters should be able to submit rental applications through the portal. Landlords should also have an online portal that allows them to easily and quickly review the performance of their properties. The portal can also allow property owners to check for the latest notes or statements.

Online access is an important consideration when selecting a property manager. It prevents many of the headaches in the business, such as playing phone tag or misplacing important files. It also enables property owners to access their funds more quickly. Plus, it makes for happier tenants, as they can easily let the manager know when there is an issue that requires a quick response.

Comprehensive Services

Rent collection is easily one of the biggest pain points for landlords. In fact, The property manager you select should offer a comprehensive array of services. You shouldn’t have to work with multiple companies in order to get everything you need. Typically, property managers do the following:

  • Market the property.
  • Show the property to prospective tenants.
  • Screen potential tenants, such as by conducting background and credit checks.
  • Collect the rent.
  • Ensure the property is appropriately maintained.
  • Contract with third-party vendors for property repairs.
  • Conduct property inspections.
  • Initiate eviction proceedings.

The manager you select should also handle the rental contracts for you. In addition, it’s ideal to choose a company that offers proactive financial reporting services. This enables you to evaluate the performance of your properties. As a result, you can make smart decisions that grow your business.

You can find complete property management services from licensed pros at New Concept Property Management. Call our office in Tucson at (520) 305-3950 to request a free rental analysis. We also encourage you to check out our A+ rating from the BBB, as well as our many five-star Google reviews!